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Wednesday, 16 May 2012 - 8:45
Pakistan 'likely to attend' NATO talks on Afghanistan.
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Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari is set to be at this weekend's NATO summit on Afghanistan.

The Pakistani embassy in Washington said he was "likely to attend" the meeting in Chicago.

NATO said Pakistan had an important role to play in its neighbour's future.

The move comes amid signs that Pakistan may be about to lift a blockade of NATO's ground supply lines to Afghanistan imposed in November, after a NATO air strike killed 24 soldiers.

The closure of the route, after the Pakistani soldiers were killed, left thousands of tankers bound for Afghanistan stranded in Pakistan.

Correspondents say Pakistani leaders may have decided the blockade of NATO shipments is counter-productive and has resulted in the country being sidelined in planning for Afghanistan's future.

Pakistan's government is also due to present its budget later this month, and badly needs US aid.

Pakistan stayed away from the last major summit on Afghanistan, which was held in December.

The summit in Chicago on Sunday and Monday is said to be the largest meeting NATO has organised, with about 60 countries and organisations attending.

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